A Beautiful Discovery at Brainard Lake!

When we headed up to Brainard Lake for a picnic and a hike, it never occurred to me that I would make a beautiful discovery. I had to share my photos with you.

Brainard Lake

The overcast skies and heavy air felt more like Wisconsin, than Colorado. Thunderstorms predicted in the afternoon didn’t stop me from grabbing my hiking gear and heading outdoors. Sometimes I just have to get out of Dodge.

Brainard Lake July 2020 Mountains in the reflection on the lake

My husband, Danny, and I drove to a picnic area near the lake as the temperature dropped. The clouds gathered so we didn’t waste much time.

boy fishing on the ledge Brainard Lake, mountains in background

We took a trail to Long Lake.

Dam near Long Lake

The river rushed down from Long Lake.

Long Lake Hike river

As the lake peeked from the branches ahead, I felt a drop of rain.

calm before the storm. Long lake just ahead with the storm looming.

We never made it to the lake with the storm pressing down from the west, but we hiked to a meadow and made a surprising discovery.

Field wildflowers on the hike to Long Lake

The color popped even without the sunshine.

Beautiful wildflowers

Everywhere along the path, the flowers bloomed profusely.

Wildflowers Long Lake hike

Painted daisies everywhere.

painted daisy Colorado

And so many more to enjoy.

Wildflowers in Colorado

But, the thunder concussed through the mountain range in the distance.

wildflowers brainard lake

Time was running out.

Click on this video to see the intense colors of the wildflowers and then… THUNDER!

We made it to the car and avoided most of the storm. Whew! With the threat of lethal lightning strikes, I don’t fool with Mother Nature.

This shot was taken before the hike.

Susie and Danny at Brainard Lake

I can’t wait for our backpacking trip to Devil’s Thumb. Another adventure is right around the corner.

Brainard Lake Mountain reflection

Have you picnicked this summer? Do you like to eat outdoors? How about camping?

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A Beautiful Discovery At Brainard Lake! Click for photos, pinterest pin

73 thoughts on “A Beautiful Discovery at Brainard Lake!

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  1. These pictures are so beautiful. It looks amazing. We have not been out much, but have hiked around our area a bit. The heat has been a deterrent. Your pictures are making me long for the outdoors! Enjoy! It looks unreal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nice to meet you, Wandering Path!

      Thanks so much. The flowers were amazing! It’s hit or miss in the mountains where they bloom for about a week or so. Every so often, we get lucky. Really lucky not to be caught in an electric storm. Whoa!

      I hope you get a break in the weather. We’re in June’s monsoon season with lots of moisture. That never happens in July and August, but I’ll take it! Droughts can be devastating here in the West.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Nice to meet you as well. We are deep in the middle of a heat wave. It’s going to be 93 today, but the pool is in our future. It is really the only way we can leave the house. Even shade provides little relief. I believe you about the droughts. Fires start soon after I’ve heard. Too much rain is too as well. I like when there is a season for balance. LOL


        1. Balance is good! We had 17 inches of rain in Boulder in 2013. The floods were devastating since we have rock, sand and clay soil.

          I just noticed your name is Wandering Empath. How cool are you? No pun intended.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Oh, Iโ€™m sure. Yeah, Iโ€™m empathic, not as cool as one would think. Comes with positives and negatives like anything else. Reading people is just something I can do. Less now with social distancing. ๐Ÿ˜†


              1. I had the worst time in the store when we went for food. It was palpable. I am very good at blocking, so I have some amount of control, but when a feeling is so thick, I can do little to cope. Especially when its my own emotion as well. It just made me exhausted. Are you empathic as well?


                1. I think so. The day Columbine happened here in Colorado, I met friends for lunch. I told them that I felt as though I had gotten a speeding ticket on the way there. I had a high level of anxiety. When I returned home, I turned on the TV and couldn’t believe it. I pay a lot of attention to my gut when I’m meeting people too.

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. All good stuff. I feel that women in general are very intuitive, but there is another level. Are you able to read people? By reading, I mean able to tell things about them, but you aren’t sure how you know.


  2. That is such a beautiful hike (that last picture is amazing) and the flowers look like they were waiting to be discovered and admired.
    If we weren’t stuck inside because of the virus, it would be because of the heat ( went rain stops this week.,..having to shove the dog off the couch and force her to go out…it’s summer, what can I say?)
    I’m making a list of hikes from your posts so when we do manage to road trips again, there’s no wondering where to head.
    Stay cool and have fun ( and go early…lightening seems to want to run interference for wild areas wishing humans would please leave them alone HAHA)


    1. The lightning had us practically sprinting! Good thing our car was parked in the opposite direction of the storm.

      You gave me an idea. I should compile a post with all of my hikes!

      Thanks for swinging by, Phil. I hope the weather cools off soon…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. WAIT WAIT! Dogs permitted hikes!
        The parks frown now – the National forests still OK? Regulations change so some suggestions of those listed in books/online are out of date. Actual reports from those there are such a big help….we have a big dog companion…and wile we can put a t-shirt and hat on her, Molly is refusing to wear hiking shoes and gets tired of walking on two legs. HAHA


  3. Beautiful. The pictures and video looks amazing! Four months and counting for the lockdown to end. Longing to get out of the city for a trek or picnic.


    1. Ooh. I like the sound of that! Just in time for Christmas.
      Thanks so much, SMB! It was otherworldly to come upon a field of grass filled with such huge variety blooming at the same time.

      I hope you get a chance to get explore the outdoors soon! It’s a lot safer than buying groceries. LOL!


      1. Hahaha.. very true Susie. I hope yours words come true soon.
        It feels really good to read about your beautiful day out. Thank you for sharing๐Ÿ˜Š


        1. Aww! Thank you!
          I agree about the Universe. I live in paradise with a pond in the backyard. Covid’s been depressing, but embracing the beauty of the yard and escaping to a trail once in a while is uplifting!!

          It’s so nice to meet you, Brandi!

          Liked by 1 person

  4. These pics are definitely cool and remind me of your WildRider posts ๐Ÿ™‚ you know before Covid-19. Finding those daisies must have been a cool surprise. Iโ€™m digging those pictures! That moment must have felt good, taking a minute to appreciate all that. So glad you made it back before the storm. Lightning is no joke!


  5. Great pics, Susie! They look particularly appealing to an east coaster like myself, who’s buried in writing and editing work on a computer for most of the week. I’d love to head out west and catch these sights in person. Thanks for sharing.


    1. When Covid is under control, you should, Paul! I’ve been in the same sort of chair and wear the same hat. LOL! By the time the weekend rolls around, I’m ready to GO! What are you working on?

      Thanks for stopping by!


  6. I love it when the mountain meadows are covered in wildflowers, but those skies definitely look like the Midwest. We enjoyed blueberry picking in Bayfield, WI yesterday and then enjoyed a picnic lunch along the shores of Lake Superior. Today I made blueberry pancakes and a blueberry coffee cake.


  7. I bet the thunder really echoes off those mountains. Has to be totally different to listen to than here in the coastal flat lands…lol


    1. For sure!! it concusses in the mountains and makes itself known. I hate to hear it when I’m hiking and have been known to run all the way back. It’s thundering right now, but I’m safe inside, so I LOVE IT!

      Great to see you, Kevin!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Brainard Lake looks stunning Susie, and those daisies are beautiful. What a lovely discovery in a great location. You get out to some great places don’t you?


    1. Colorado is a beautiful state, Jonno! It can be 90 degrees in Boulder and twenty degrees cooler in the mountains too! I will pack a winter jacket when we backpack overnight. I hope we see wildflowers along the way!


  9. Love all those wildflowers! We haven’t been on many adventures this summer but luckily we live on about an acre of land – so I pretend that I’m far from home a lot!


  10. More gorgeous photos, Susie. I remember one of our trips to see our friends in Denver several years back where we spent a few days just traveling to see the wildflowers in the mountains.

    Which reminds me, next July, coronavirus permitting, we will be coming to visit them. Would love it if Patty and I could get together for a lunch with you and Danny. Will firm up dates when I know them. Fingers crossed.


  11. Beautiful shots! I love a good picnic, and so many of my best childhood memories are of picnicking on summer days. We save that for spring and fall here in Maryland–really too hot most days to eat outside.


    1. Thanks, Rebecca!

      โ€œItโ€™s not the heat, itโ€™s the humidity!โ€ We used to say that a lot back in Wisconsin. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I think I spent more time outside when it was hot and got used to it when I was younger. Cells actually change in size. Not anymore. I head to the mountains instead! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha–yes, we used to say NE Ohio was so terribly humid in the summer. (Visited family a couple summers in Manitowoc, which was wonderful!) Then, I moved to Maryland–stone’s throw from the Chesapeake Bay. I had no idea how humid air could be. It’s like swimming, just walking around here! Mountains sound delightful!!!


  12. These pictures of the wildflowers is what I would be the very definition of a meadow. The word brings to mind vast fields of wildflowers. They are lovely. Sort of “The Sound of Music” without the hills.


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